Three Keys to a Boston Celtics Victoryby John Devereaux December 23, 2020 0 comments
The Boston Celtics open up their season tonight. The second day of the 2020-2021 NBA season has the Celtics going up against an Eastern Conference powerhouse. Tonight at 7:30 ET the Celtics will face the Giannis Antetokounmpo-led Milwaukee Bucks. The season opener for this year’s Celtics is a very tough matchup.
The Celtics are looking to prove themselves early in the season, as a win here could be eye-opening for the league. The team is projected by many to finish in the middle of the playoff race around the third and fourth seed. However, a win tonight could make others rethink their positioning. There are three keys to tonight’s victory over Milwaukee.
Grab the Boards
The first key to a Boston win is rebounding. The Celtics have been awful rebounding the ball, especially last season. The team brought in Tristan Thompson over the offseason to help diminish second-chance points. If the Celtics can limit the Bucks on the offensive boards and come down with more defensive rebounds, then the team can control the pace of play. A very underrated aspect of basketball. A team that can control the majority of rebounds can then turn the pace of play in their favor.
Hit the Threes
The second key to tonight’s win is consistent shooting from the three-point line. The Celtics have plenty of offensive shooters in the depth chart. The willingness to shoot a three is not a problem. The problem is the consistency of the shot being taken. The Celtics love to go five straight plays of shooting the three ball. If the team can manage to keep the percentage above 36% tonight, then the Bucks will have trouble keeping up with their offense. The rookie Aaron Nesmith and Payton Pritchard need to make sure that they are taking smart shots from deep. The last thing this team needs is three-point chuckers in the lineup.
Keep Giannis out of the Paint
The final key to a Celtics victory is limiting Antetokounmpo from attacking the rim. This is the hardest key of the night, but one that can easily shift the game in the Celtics’ favor. Antetokounmpo is the reigning back-to-back MVP of the league. Where he excels in attacking the rim. If the Celtics can limit the damage of his driving ability and force him to take more floaters and mid-range shots. The team can then take advantage offensively. If Giannis is struggling to score, the team will then have to rely on shooting. This diminishes the Bucks’ chances of getting easier buckets. With Thompson and Daniel Theis protecting the paint, Giannis might find himself relying on his floaters.
Jaylen Brown is also very valuable in this situation. If Brown can force the reigning MVP into the heavily guarded paint without a passing lane, the Celtics could virtually stop the Bucks’ offense. Obviously stopping Antetokounmpo is virtually impossible, but limiting him to under 50% from the field is an achievable goal.
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